Guy Steals Plane to Impress Girlfriend

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Some of the most popular stories on the Web today.

ALISON STEWART, host:

Thanks so much for spending part of your day with THE BRYANT PARK PROJECT from NPR News.

Luke Burbank and I, we are not alone. THE BRYANT PARK PROJECT staff has been out there checking out what you have been searching, blogging, gawking at, e-mailing to your friends. From TMZ to CNN, it's time for The Most.

(Soundbite of music)

STEWART: We're going to get newscaster Korva Coleman in on this Most action. What do you have, Korva?

KORVA COLEMAN: I love this. This is so embarrassing.

(Soundbite of laughter)

COLEMAN: So embarrassing. I've been watching this Miss Universe pageant scandal. Last week, Miss Puerto Rico came out, and she was telling all the news networks that she had been sabotaged, that as she was preparing to go out for her little evening gown stroll, somebody, ahead of time, sprayed her gown and her makeup with pepper spray. And, apparently, she says she broke out in hives, life is horrible, but she mustered the strength and she moved on. And, of course, if you saw clips of that, she was shaking her booty, you know, in the bikini contest and all that.

Well, apparently, it turns out that police can't find any evidence of the pepper spray at all. Now, she had said she had iced down her face and everything. But Miss Puerto Rico, who was supposed to go to the Miss Universe contest next year, has a little explaining to do, because if you lie to a police officer, it's a felony.

STEWART: Wow.

LUKE BURBANK, host:

My question is, like, how do they know that she was lying and not just having some weird reaction and thinking - I mean, she may have been wrong, but is that the same as filing a false charge?

STEWART: That's what investigations are for, Burbank.

BURBANK: Good point, Stewart.

STEWART: That's from newser.com, one of the most viewed.

Hey, Trisha, what do you have?

TRISHA McKINNEY: Hey. Here in the control room, I have one of the most viewed stories on msnbc.com today. The headline: Man Accused of Stealing Plane to Impress Girlfriend. Sub headline: Man Accused of Drunken Theft of Plane to Wow Girlfriend - Efficacy Unclear.

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McKINNEY: So this guy in Indiana allegedly wanted to - was drunk, took his girlfriend to an airport, bragged that he could fly a plane. They both climbed in to the plane. They were heading down the taxi way when, reportedly, flames began shooting from the left engine. Then they veered off the runway and into a soybean field, damaging the aircraft to about $160,000.

STEWART: Wow.

BURBANK: Oh.

McKINNEY: And, yeah, so that was to impress her. And I think that means he's a real keeper.

STEWART: Well, he could just have been a good kisser, according to my Most, the most popular from CNN, the most trusted name in news. This is actually in their top 10. Why bad kissers don't get to second base. The scientific journal Evolutionary Psychology said that 59 percent of men and 66 percent of women said they've been in a position of being attracted to someone until they actually kissed the person - that a kiss, that's a deal breaker.

But it also says some things that we probably all already knew, that men and women have different motivations for kissing. For men, kissing is often used as a means to an end, namely to - as the study puts - gain sexual access.

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STEWART: My favorite line in the study. Women, on the other hand, use kissing as a mate assessment technique.

BURBANK: It's so weird. It's almost like men are from Mars, women are…

STEWART: …from…

MATT MARTINEZ: Another planet.

BURBANK: …a planet where they just want to make out all the time and not have it go anywhere.

MARTINEZ: Yeah.

STEWART: All right. Matt, what do you have?

MARTINEZ: Well, you know, I usually have the most e-mailed story from NPR, because I want to impress people. But today, it's from where I really go first thing in the morning, TMZ. And it's these pictures of Jennifer Love Hewitt at the beach, all these bikini pictures of her coming out. And the TMZ posted a picture of just her behind and asked the question, whose is this? And, you know, it turns out it's Jennifer Love Hewitt's. And she posted on her blog that, you know, she's not upset about the pictures per se, but she's upset for all the girls out there that are struggling with their body image. Like all women out there should, I love my body.

That said, they're not flattering pictures.

STEWART: Yeah. We should point out that she's a formerly petite actress…

MARTINEZ: Yes. Yes. Yes.

STEWART: …who a lot of people might know. In the pictures, she doesn't look as petite as she once did.

MARTINEZ: She does not. She does not.

BURBANK: But here's the thing that Ali and I were talking during the last break with these photos. It's not that it's - they're unattractive. She does not appear to be unattractive person.

MARTINEZ: No, not at all.

BURBANK: It's just not what I would expect Jennifer Love Hewitt's backyard to look like…

MARTINEZ: Right.

BURBANK: …based on my seeing her in movies and stuff. It's just surprising. It's not even unattractive.

MARTINEZ: Yeah.

STEWART: And also, we should point that it's not just TMZ where this is one of the most viewed stories, right?

MARTINEZ: People and Google Trends, it's just - it's everywhere. People are loving this. And great comments on the blogs on Jennifer Love Hewitt.

BURBANK: On TMZ, it's - she says that she loves her body and somebody, like, the fifth comment is will you love my body?

MARTINEZ: Yeah.

BURBANK: Drool, drool.

MARTINEZ: Drool, drool, somebody wrote.

STEWART: All right. Dan, what do you have?

DAN PASHMAN: Hey, guys.

BURBANK: Elevate this conversation with us, Dan.

STEWART: Please.

PASHMAN: I will. That's why they keep me around, is that - New York Times science section today, driverless cars may not be as far away as we may have thought. And this John Tierney piece, it talks about one of our editor Trisha McKinney's privatist obsessions, the Defense Advance Research Project Agency, also known as DARPA.

STEWART: Yeah, she gets the vapors when you say DARPA.

(Soundbite of laughter)

PASHMAN: Yeah. She's like…

(Soundbite of laughter)

PASHMAN: We lost her down a wormhole a few weekends ago (unintelligible).

BURBANK: Yeah. Four in the morning, sitting in Secaucus, watching…

McKINNEY: Much love for DARPA.

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PASHMAN: Yeah. But DARPA has this contest to create a driverless car. In 2004, none of the cars made more it than seven miles. The next, in '05, it was 132 miles. This one last month that we talked about on this show was a 60-mile course, and they had to deal with traffic, and it was considered a huge success. The success of that contest is making people say that this might not be so far off. And real quick, a couple of the things that I think are most interesting about the benefits of driverless cars that I hadn't considered -one is that, at any given time, when you have traffic on the highway, only 10 percent of the road's capacity is being filled because of all the space between cars. If you have mechanized cars, the cars can travel a lot closer together, and thus, take up less space on the road, and thus, eliminate some kind of traffic.

MARTINEZ: Like in "Minority Report."

PASHMAN: I didn't see it, though.

STEWART: Yes.

PASHMAN: I'll take your word for it.

MARTINEZ: Yeah, it's just like "Minority Report."

PASHMAN: Right.

MARTINEZ: Trust me.

PASHMAN: And the other thing that it points out is even if these things aren't perfect, if they can reduce accidents, you know, humans aren't perfect, either. But the - my favorite thing about this article is it talks a little bit of the history of smart cars as they're called now. And it hit me that this video from 1939 - a General Motors Futurama video about what the future in 1960 is going to be like, and it talks about cars and all these other kinds of things. And this is a separate clip. It's separate from the car part that I just thought was super awesome. So this is that - this is a clip from that video.

(Soundbite of General Motors Futurama video)

Unidentified Man: This world of tomorrow is a world of beauty. These eternal things wrought by God are lovely and unchanging.

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Unidentified Man: A vast circular airport is close to the city, with a giant dirigible hanger.

(Soundbite of laughter)

Unidentified Man: So that it can be turned easily to meet any wind direction, it is resting in a pool of liquid.

(Soundbite of laughter)

Unidentified Man: Does it seem strange?

McKINNEY: Yes.

Unidentified Man: Unbelievable?

STEWART: Yes.

Unidentified Man: Remember, this is the world of 1960.

(Soundbite of laughter)

McKINNEY: Brought to you by DARPA.

(Soundbite of laughter)

STEWART: All right, everybody.

BURBANK: That's wonderful.

PASHMAN: Yeah.

STEWART: Thanks, Dan…

PASHMAN: Sure thing.

STEWART: …Matt, Trisha, Korva.

BURBANK: Bye-bye.

STEWART: That's The Most. You can find these stories and other BPP goodies at our Web site, npr.org/bryantpark. 1960 seems cool.

BURBANK: Yeah. Our Web site is floating in a pool of water, by the way.

PASHMAN: 1960's water.

BURBANK: Oh, well.

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